LEXINGTON, Ky. (9/16/13) – In a rematch of the first round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament, Xavier netted a goal in the 69th minute to secure a 2-1 win over the Kentucky men’s soccer team, on a perfect Saturday night in front of 1,036 fans at Xavier Soccer Complex.
After Xavier – a team that has earned NCAA Tournament berths the last three years – scored in the third minute to open the game, with the UK team calling for offsides on the tally, Kentucky had to fight back to even up the game. UK got its equalizer late in the first half on the strength of freshman Kaelon Fox’s first career goal, coming off a corner kick from freshman Charlie Reymann.
Xavier was coming off a 2-0 win on Tuesday against UC Irvine, with UC Irvine a team that sprung a 1-0 upset win at No. 16 Louisville on Friday night.
“Xavier has a couple of guys that are really special,” UK head coach Johan Cedergren said. “We have played them a couple of times now and we knew who they were and what we had to do. Two or three times we switched off and a good team like Xavier is going to punish you.
“I liked that we went toe to toe with them. There were a couple of chances we could’ve taken and we could’ve had a different result here. In the end, you have to be able to come to a place like Xavier – when maybe the refereeing isn’t the best – and you just have to find a way to grind out a result. We aren’t quite there yet, but we have a whole week to prepare for next game and hopefully we can get closer by Friday.”
Kentucky (2-2) keeper Jack Van Arsdale made a save in his 90 minutes of action, with Xavier keeper Eric Osswald recording three saves. UK finished with a 12-9 advantage in shots and a 4-2 advantage in corner kicks.
“I liked the effort. The application. The nerve. The ability on the ball,” Cedergren said about the positives from the game. “We got stung early on when we switched off just for a quick second. They scored and we had to work really, really hard in the first half to get back in. And in the end, we scored off a set piece, something we had worked really hard on set pieces (this week). It was a great delivery and a great goal by Kaelon.”
The Wildcats will return to action next Friday with the Gamecock Classic, taking on Dartmouth at 4:30 p.m. ET at Eugene Stone Stadium in Columbia, S.C.
Xavier (2-3) took the lead in the third minute, as UK had it swiped on the attacking end. XU then formed a quick counter attack on the far sideline, with Calum Latham crossing it into the box for Matt Walker, who finished it for his third goal of the year, with UK’s defenders and bench calling for offsides on the play
UK answered in the 42nd minute, as Tyler Riggs and Jacob Scearce combined to create a run down the near sideline, resulting in a Riggs’ cross booted out for a corner. Reymann lofted the corner from the near side into the middle of the six-yard box, finding the head of Fox, who flipped it up for his first career goal.
Xavier took the lead in the 70th minute, as the Musketeers had a run down the near sideline that led to a cross into the box from Matt Walker. The ball sailed through the traffic in the box and UK freshman Alex Bumpus just missed on his clearance attempt, with the ball finding De Paoli at the edge of the six-yard box. De Paoli fired a shot that sailed across the goal mouth and into the net at the far post, past a diving Van Arsdale.
Information provided by Brent Ingram (UK Athletics)
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